Who? Alex Farrow
What? Philosophy A-Level
Where? Laughing Horse @ Cabaret Voltaire – Long Room (Venue 338)
What are your feelings as you enter into this year’s Edinburgh Fringe season?
I love it. Love watching shows. Love doing shows. It’s the best. It feels like being a student going back to school after the long holidays and seeing all your friends again. But it’s also exam time and everyone is worried and excited about how their reviews will go. But I liked school by the time I was a teenager. Perhaps that’s why I became a teacher.
What is the premise of your Edinburgh show this year?
It’s a defense of teaching philosophy in schools and democracy in the wider world.
What is the biggest obstacle you face(d) while putting this show together?
Balancing the silly with the serious is tricky over an hour. Too much silly and people get disinterested, but not enough silly and people don’t have enough fun. One review said, ‘the show is actually quite moving, especially considering it had so many penises in it’ so I think I’ve reached nailed it and reached a kind of golden mean with it.
Has your attitude towards the Fringe changed at all in recent years?
In my first year I camped in a tent on the outskirts of Edinburgh. My tent blew away (depositing my pants and flyers about the campsite). I upgraded to a camper van the next year which broke down a lot. In recent times I’ve treated myself to a bed in an actual house. It’s very expensive so please donate generously. I guess that reflects an attitude of being a bit kinder to myself while I am up there.
Do you have any other Edinburgh show recommendations?
Chelsea Birkby is excellent. Great punchlines but always with something more interesting going on underneath the jokes. I’m directing Matt Hobs who is doing a wonderful show about science and OCD. Both are highly recommended.
Where would you like to be in a year’s time?
Back at Fringe. I love it. If you’re reading this, you’ve probably been and are a keen comedy watcher and fan. If not, then really do go its so, so much fun. Wish I’d discovered it sooner.